No bones about it: Resveratrol’s a wonder supplement

Resveratrol is a wonder supplement for its circulation benefits alone. Last year I told you about a study in which patients taking resveratrol experienced a 23-percent improvement in flow-mediated dilation (a measure of blood vessel function).

As I’ve mentioned many times, healthy circulation is critical to your health. And it’s also one of the first things to suffer under the weight of obesity.

But today I want to tell you about some new research on resveratrol, which uncovered a whole other benefit to this already-spectacular supplement.

The study, published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, showed that resveratrol led to an improvement in spinal bone density. Researchers studied resveratrol supplementation in a group of middle-aged men with metabolic syndrome (a condition characterized by abdominal obesity, elevated triglycerides, high blood pressure, high fasting blood glucose and low HDL cholesterol).

The men received either 500 mg resveratrol, 75 mg resveratrol or a placebo two times per day for 16 weeks. Bone mineral density, geometry and microstructure were assessed before treatment and at the study’s conclusion.

And the findings were stunning: Men who received 1,000 mg of resveratrol per day experienced a 2.6-percent increase in bone mineral density in their lumbar spines by the end of the study compared to the placebo group.

Lead author Marie Juul Ørnstrup, MD, of Aarhus University Hospital in Denmark, concluded, “Our findings suggest [resveratrol] stimulates bone-forming cells within the body.”

When I recommend resveratrol to my patients, they inevitably ask me if they can just “drink the benefits,” since resveratrol is derived from red wine polyphenols. Well I hate to spoil your bacchanalian fun, but… no. Red wine is loaded with polyphenols…but it’s also loaded with sugar. Which cancels out the benefit.

My recommendation is to take resveratrol in supplement form. I typically recommend 500 mg a day, but if you’re at increased risk of osteoporosis, you can talk to your doctor about increasing the dose.


Resveratrol Increases Bone Mineral Density and Bone Alkaline Phosphatase in Obese Men: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial.” Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, epub ahead of print 10/16/14

“Resveratrol boosts spinal bone density in men with metabolic syndrome.” ScienceDaily, 10/16/14 (